Having faced a year of many controversies, protests, and a statewide recall of office, Governor Scott Walker gave a speech Wednesday, Jan 26, highlighting the successes of his term.
Walker boasted that his administration has upped the economy by creating the climate for thousands of new jobs and has saved the education system large amounts of money with his reforms. He also mentioned the new “Read to Lead” education program which is intended to improve the state’s recently failing reading scores. He then said the state is “headed in the right direction.”
His speech was then disrupted by a group of hecklers, who shouted at him and were escorted out of the chamber’s upper gallery. One woman screamed “Liar. Recall. Liar!” before being led out by security.
Walker referred to how he has been able to balance the state budget without raising taxes, decreased the unemployment rate, and lowered school tax levies.
“We balanced it--without raising taxes, without massive layoffs, and without budget tricks,” Walker said.
He also praised his health care reforms and collective bargaining banishment decisions, and for having done exactly what he said he would while running for office.
Before his speech, a crowd of protesters one hundred strong gathered outside the State Capitol building, chanting songs laden with anti-Walker and anti-conservative messages.
Just a few weeks after a member of his cabinet was indicted for fraud, Walker announced the creation of a new taskforce geared to weeding out and uprooting fraudulent or wasteful spending in the state government.
“I respect the hard working people of Wisconsin; I will continue to be a good steward of ta
xpayers’ dollars,” Walker said.
The Waste, Fraud and Abuse Elimination Taskforce will be in charge of the creation of policies to cut down a targeted goal of $400 million.
He also announced the creation of a business think tank tasked with clearing the way for the creation of new jobs.
“I will direct our agencies to work with them to remove antiquated and unnecessary regulations that pose a threat to
creating new jobs,” Walker said.